Saturday, April 30, 2011

Children's Memorial Flag Day

Every year, on the last Friday of April, different communities around the country fly the CWLA Children's Memorial Flag to remember child abuse prevention month, and the work of communities to protect children from abuse. For the last several years, Wood County WV has had a ceremony down at the flag pole in the Government Square in Parkersburg to recognize some community members who have worked hard to protect children, and to tie in with the national flag events. The events have been going on since 1998 around the country, and within a few years, the flag was flown in every county in West Virginia. We have been having events since the early 2000's, including events on Quincy Hill Park, in front of PHS, and in our parking lot on St. Mary's Avenue. Our CHS-Parkersburg efforts during Child Abuse Prevention month have focused the past several years on the Making a Difference/ the Pinwheels for Prevention theme, of helping communities strengthen families and create protective factors around children and families, but we participate in these Flag events as a partner with the DHHR, law enforcement, government officials, the prosecutor's office to remember the partnerships necessary to take care of children.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Neighborhood Clean Up on Earth Day!

CHS-Parkersburg, led by Missy Storey's organizing efforts, combined with the Volunteer Action Center of Parkersburg to stage a neighborhood clean up on Friday, April 22 in our area of St. Mary's Ave (19th St. to 13th St.) Teams of youth and adults cleaned up trash along the way. Around 50 people participated, and there was an article in the paper with a picture the next day. This was deemed a successful volunteer/ community service project, and hopefully contributes to some neighborhood awareness and spirit. Participants received a t-shirt compliments of the Volunteer Action Center.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Walkathon for Transitional Living Program youth - SHOES!

Lisa Doyle-Parsons organized a very successful walkathon Sunday April 17th at Parkersburg City Park. It was covered by a Parkersburg News reporter who had a great story Monday. Over 70 people attended and the event raised over $500. We have also received several inquiries specifically about helping with shoes directly from the publicity. Many of our old and new community partners participated.

OM&GA's "Taking It Home for Mother's Day" campaign

Between now and May 8th, Mother's Day, stores in the Oil Marketers and Grocers Association will be selling (cardboard) Flower's in honor of Mother's Day, with the proceeds coming to Children's Home Society across the state. 375 stores are participating, including about 30 in the Parkersburg region. Staff have been out to connect with our stores and show our appreciation and encouragement; and we have positive hopes of a big campaign. Please support the work of the agency in this additional way when you are out and about!!!

WV Promise / VISTA event

April 12th, Missy Storey spearheaded a successful training and recognition event for statewide VISTA's under the WV Promise "umbrella." Also Promise Places were recognized (many of the same organizations!) and a training was held, attended by many others from the community and across the state. Missy did a great job organizing the event; with meals, displays, and good fellowship. The evening was topped off by a short set of music by Stacey Earle and Mark Stuart, in advance of a coffee house held later in the evening back at our Mid Town Family Resource Center. Thanks to Christ United Methodist Church for the use of the church, and for a number of supporters rallied to help with the event.

Wood County Community Baby Shower

Barb Lott was the lead organizer of this wide community collaboration held last Friday, April 15th. It was held at Good Shepherd Church and was well attended by both vendors and young parents. Many resources were shared, and many good gifts and prizes were given out.

Tree Planting

On April 9th, the WE CAN program, led by Ashley Way, held a very successful community outreach event; a neighborhood tree planting. The cooperation Ashley was able to gather made this a great project. A wide array of people participated: mentors, mentees, families, staff, volunteers from other programs, Master Gardeners, were all involved. Ashley got involved with the City planners and Tree Commission members. There are some good pictures commemorating the event!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

McKinley All Stars benefit concert

May 6th, at 7 pm at Jefferson School auditorium, the McKinley All Stars will be performing a second annual benefit concert to support the work of the Mid Town Family Resource Center. Fred Shreve and his talented group of educators will entertain the audience with original songs (of his and Greg Syner's) and well chosen cover tunes to delight the audience. This is a highly talented group, and we hope for lots of community members to come out and see their musicianship, and support our work with neighborhood children and families.

Child Abuse Prevention Month

Our Wood County Partners in Prevention team is busily conducting Child Abuse Prevention Month activities, led by program coordinator, Lisa Weaver. We had an article in the paper this weekend about the Month, and a number of activities going on, including Pin Wheel gardens, public awareness efforts, participation in a community Easter Egg Hunt among many. Lisa is doing a great job of conveying the message about prevention, by supporting families, creating protective factors around children, and de-emphasizing the negative, discouraging focus that traditional may have been present in Child Abuse Prevention efforts.

OM&GA's "Taking It Home For Mother's Day" campaign off to a great start!

CHS in conjunction with the Oil Marketers and Grocers Association (OM&GA) has kicked off the Taking It Home For Mothers Day campaign, a fund raiser going on across the state at all the OMEGA members convenience and grocer stores (around 370 stores statewide), where the stores are selling a flower card for $1 to support the work of CHS across its sites. Our kick off event in Parkersburg was held at a Par Mar Store in south Parkersburg, with newspaper coverage (and a fine article the next day) and later, TV news coverage on the 5 o'clock news. We have around 30 stores in our part of the state, and we hope CHS-Parkersburg supporters will participate in the campaign when they stop in the stores, and thank the OMEGA members for their support of the agency with this major campaign.

Lots of good activity going on these last few days

I just got back from the Transitional Living Program Walkathon at Parkersburg City Park. Lisa Doyle Parsons, and her many avid supporters put together a fine walk despite a howling wind. We had over 70 people and have raised around $500 from the event. Good diversity of participation from some continuum of care partners, United Bank supporters, and others from the community. We got newspaper reporter coverage, which we'll look for tomorrow, and good participation from the youth in the program. A cheery time was had by all; look for some pictures to emerge for this event!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Wirt County Community Baby Shower

The Wirt County Community Baby Shower was held on Friday April 1 (really it was !) Mary Christian and Vickie Taylor represented CHS showing the RFTS and B23 programs. Participants were given the opportunity to hear about the variety of community resources available for pregnant women, and families with infants under 1 year in Wirt County. They were able to enjoy typical baby shower cake and food. There were many , many donations of baby care equipment that were awarded to several of the participants as prizes. Vickie took advantage of the event to meet face to face some recent referrals and made plans with them to complete intakes to enroll them in RFTS.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

McKinley All Stars benefit concert

May 6th at 7 pm, at Jefferson School Auditorium, the McKinley All Stars will perform a second benefit concert to support the after school program. This group of talented musicians, made up of McKinley faculty and some other Wood County educators, will be guaranteed enjoyable entertainment. Greg Syner and Fred Shreve write many of their own songs, and they intersperse these with fan favorite cover tunes, and a friendly, funny banter between songs. Please mark your calendars for this entertaining evening of live local music, and support the neighborhood work we do with students and their families.

welcome to two new staff members!

We welcome Francis Coyne-Davis and Marina Kelley as our newest staff members at the CHS-Parkersburg site. Francis is the new program coordinator for our Carrera model teen pregnancy prevention program (an intensive after school program for neighborhood youth) and Marina is the mental health specialist in the same program. This federally funded grant program is starting up this year, and will provide a very comprehensive program for middle school students (initially) that wraps around the youth with powerful components that will lead them to success in school, careers, healthy relationships, and a healthy future. Stay tuned for more information as it unfolds! And be sure to welcome Francis and Marina on board!